DETROIT AND VANCOUVER – General Motors Co. and Lithium Americas Corp. have announced their joint investment in the development of the Thacker Pass mine in Nevada. The Thacker Pass mine is the largest known source of lithium in the United States and the third largest in the world. The joint investment will see GM make a $650 million equity investment in Lithium Americas, making it the largest investment by an automaker in producing battery raw materials.
Lithium carbonate from Thacker Pass will be used in GM’s proprietary Ultium battery cells. Lithium is a key material in lithium-ion batteries and offers higher energy density, more usable capacity, and the ability to withstand repeated charging and discharging, including fast charging. GM is launching a range of vehicles using the Ultium platform, including trucks, SUVs, luxury vehicles, and light commercial vehicles.
“GM has secured all the battery material we need to build more than 1 million EVs annually in North America in 2025, and our future production will increasingly draw from domestic resources like the site in Nevada we’re developing with Lithium Americas,” said GM Chair and CEO Mary Barra. The investment will support the energy transition, job creation, and economic growth in America.
GM’s investment will be split into two tranches, with the first tranche’s funds being held in escrow until certain conditions are met. If these conditions are met, the funds will be released and GM will become a shareholder in Lithium Americas, with the escrow release expected to occur by the end of 2023. The second tranche investment is expected to follow the separation of Lithium Americas’ U.S. and Argentine businesses and is contingent on Lithium Americas securing sufficient capital to fund the development expenditures.
Production at Thacker Pass is projected to begin in the second half of 2026. Upon closing the first tranche investment, GM will receive exclusive access to Phase 1 production and will have the right of first offer on Phase 2 production. Lithium Americas expects Thacker Pass to create 1,500 jobs in construction and operations. GM has announced four U.S. cell plants with a total annual capacity of 160 gigawatt hours, which are expected to create 11,000 jobs in construction and operations. GM is currently building EVs in four plants across the U.S. and Canada, with suppliers investing to create a robust North America-focused supply chain for EV raw materials and components.